Washington Post Names Corbett Most Vulnerable Governor (Again)

Tom-Corbett-upsetThe Washington Post hasn’t been shy in providing Governor Tom Corbett with bad news in the past year, and this July, for the thirteenth month in a row, they named him the U.S. governor most likely to receive the boot in November.

The Post’s blog The Fix named the twelve governor’s races most likely to result in a change of party control, with PA at the very top. While the descriptions of the eleven other races include several sentences including factors such as fundraising and party rifts, the descriptor of  the Pennsylvania race is just a single sentence.

“Gov. Tom Corbett (R), quite simply, needs a small miracle to beat Democrat Tom Wolf,” writes the Post, which includes a link to the race’s current poll numbers.

Corbett, though, isn’t the only Republican gubernatorial incumbent in danger of losing the re-election to a Democratic opponent. According to The Washington Post, GOP governors Paul LePage of Maine and Rick Scott of Florida comprise the rest of the list’s top three opportunities. In fact, of the 36 gubernatorial races being held in November, Democrats hold the advantage in eight of the top 12.

Much of this has to do with timing. Four years ago during the 2010 midterms, there was a massive realignment with Republicans picking up 12 seats and Democrats six. Therefore, this November Republicans have to defend 24 seats compared to the Democrats who only have to guard fifteen.

PA-Gov: Wolf Calls For Income Tax Increase, Reduction of Property Taxes

Tom-WolfTom Wolf is hoping to revamp the Commonwealth’s tax structure if elected Governor in November.

Having served as the state’s revenue secretary under Gov. Ed Rendell, Wolf believes that wealthy Pennsylvanians need to pay more taxes.

Moreover, Wolf believes the state’s over-reliance on local property taxes to fund public education has contributed to current budgetary issues. He thinks that Pennsylvania’s nearly $30 billion state public school system should be funded primarily by income, rather than property, taxes.

“There is a real passion for property tax relief,” Wolf told a panel of Associated Press reporters and editors. “We have gone well beyond what I think the local property taxpayer should pay to support public education, and so we need to reduce that, and that means that the state should take a bigger share of responsibility.”

Currently, the state shoulders one-third of the burden, while property tax revenue amounts to more than 40 percent. Wolf’s proposed budget increases the state’s share to 50 percent.

The Democratic nominee’s proposed budget would also adjust the state’s 43 year old income tax. If elected, he plans to shift more of the financial burden onto citizens in the higher income brackets. He also plans to relieve more low-income households of their tax burden through a “universal exemption.”

Wolf sees his plan as fair, and he hopes that it will lessen the burden on those who he deems as the middle class; households with annual incomes between $70,000 and $90,000.

Wolf commented, “I’m looking at it from the point of view of fairness. I think people like me should pay more. I think people who are starting out, building a business, starting a family, should pay less.”

Wolf does not support an increase in the sales taxes, however he is in favor of a natural gas extraction tax.

The millionaire businessman spent over $10 million of his own money in order to win the Democratic primary.

Governor Corbett sees rising property taxes as a result of the burgeoning cost of public pensions. The Governor has been working to reduce the cost of public pensions, and stated in a conference call last Thursday that he is open to using a task force approach.

Corbett said that Wolf, “doesn’t seem to think there is a pension crisis…it’s only going to keep getting worse. In just two years, it will add $1.2 billion to the budget. We can’t keep adding those costs. The system is clearly broken and we need to do something about it.”

PA-Gov: Wolf Responds to Corbett’s Attacks (VIDEO)

Recently, Governor Corbett took the gloves off and began hammering Democratic nominee Tom Wolf. Well, now Wolf is fighting back.

In a new TV commercial titled “Take a Look”, the Wolf campaign responds to the ad the Governor’s team released last week in which the incumbent accused the front-runner of avoiding state taxes.

“Have you seen Tom Corbett’s negative ad with this actress?,” the narrator asks. “It’s just not true and more of the same from Corbett.”

The spot goes on to clarify that the Wolf Organization is headquartered, and pays taxes, in Pennsylvania. It also advocates for the Democrat’s plan for a severance tax on natural gas drillers to pay for schools, improving infrastructure and creating manufacturing jobs.

“Take a look at his plan for yourself,” the narrator urges along with a link to the nominee’s platform.

“Tom Wolf, a Fresh Start for Pennsylvania,” the commercial concludes, invoking the candidate’s slogan.

“Millionaire Secretary Tom Wolf is so desperate to hide the fact that he’s not paying his fair share of Pennsylvania taxes that he’s now running ads citing stories from early May to fact check an ad that just began airing in late July,” responded Corbett-Cawley Communications Director Chris Pack.

“He’s using carefully crafted language in his empty response to distract from the fact that he incorporated his company in Delaware so that he pays less in Pennsylvania taxes,” Pack continued. “If Wolf is so adamant that he’s not paying less than his fair share of Pennsylvania taxes, he should just go ahead and release his corporate taxes like he said he would. We just can’t trust millionaire Secretary Tom Wolf when he continues hiding and refusing to make good on his promises.”

7/28 Morning Buzz

PA-state-flag6The 2014 celebrity look-alikes, the Philly Tea Party changes its name and our weekly round-up of news from the gubernatorial election. Plus, last week’s Ups & Downs! Good morning politicos, here’s the Buzz!

PoliticsPA’s Celebrity Look-Alikes 2014: The resemblance is striking! Here are PA politicos and their celebrity doppelgangers.

7/25 Ups & Downs: A credit downgrade, a listicle and a gun. Who says summer is boring and predicable? See who made this week’s list.

PA-Gov Round-Up: Pension and Education Crises: We take a look at the events of the last week in the state’s gubernatorial race.

Philadelphia-Based Tea Party Group Changes Name, Shifts Focus: The Independence Hall Tea Party Association announced today that it will henceforth be known only as the Independence Hall Foundation and will be expanding its focus to include mainstream conservative issues outside of the Tea Party movement’s usual scope.

Statewide
State House Sound Bites: Gov. Corbett signs execution warrant for man convicted of York County murder
PA Independent: Week in review: PA credit rating takes a hit; arcade owner battles big tax
StateImpactPA: Drilling plans for Loyalsock State Forest quietly move forward

Philadelphia
The Inquirer: Wolf and Corbett stump across Pa.
The Inquirer: Parents press Christie on Rx marijuana
The Inquirer: Open question: Records chief frets over future
Heard in the Hall: Hope rises that Democratic convention may come to Philadelphia
WHYY Newsworks: Son: Joe Paterno feared wrongly accusing Sandusky
KYW Newsradio: Some customers cash in on health care reform

SEPA
Pottstown Mercury: Pa. pension crisis: Gov. Corbett open to task force approach
Pottstown Mercury: Court ruling clears way for Pa. charter schools to expand
Pottstown Mercury: In Southeastern PA, subminimum wages paired with vocational training
Delco Daily Times: State rep sees need to fix mental health system
Bucks Local News: Northampton Township considers implementation of LERTA program to stimulate economic growth

Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh Business Times: See you in September: Congress punts on big issues until after August recess
Pittsburgh Business Times: IRS posts forms for Obamacare’s employer mandate; instructions not included
Pittsburgh Business Times: Obama urges halt to rules that allow companies to leave U.S. for tax reasons
Post-Gazette: Mayor Peduto hails improved crowd control after PNC Park concert
Post-Gazette: Budget worries halt plans
Post-Gazette: Pittsburgh selected to host National League of Cities 2016 conference
Post-Gazette: District attorney demands changes in Pittsburgh police ID procedures
Post-Gazette: PUC grants emergency applications for ride-share companies to operate
Tribune Review: Emails show Allegheny County Council staff investigated potential snooping

Southwest
AP: Independent hopefuls may widen gubernatorial field
AP: Wolf: Wealthy should pay more to cut school taxes
Altoona Mirror: Gov. Corbett’s remarks upset GOP lawmakers
Altoona Mirror: Group seeks changes to justice system

NEPA
AP: Son: Joe Paterno feared wrongly accusing Sandusky
Citizens Voice: Hazelton Public Transit will fill fund void
Citizens Voice: Some state audits bring policy, legal changes
Pocono Record: Slow down, PennDOT, Scavello urges

South Central
York Daily Record: A look at Gov. Tom Corbett’s pension push and what some Pa. voters say about it
York Daily Record: Guns: Penn Township man pushes for open-carrying rights
Carlisle Sentinel: Dispatched: Historic change for Carlisle Police
Harrisburg Patriot News: U.S. Sen Bob Casey talks to the midstate’s ‘sandwich generation’ for guidance on caregiver bill
Lebanon Daily News: Jonestown council president, VP resign
AP: Veterans’ response to Walsh’s PTSD remarks regarding Army War College paper mixed

Lehigh Valley
WFMZ: Rep. Paul Clymer faces tough crowd at town meeting
WFMZ & AP: Tom Wolf: Wealthy should pay more to cut school taxes
Express Times: Syrian-Americans rally for peace as Gaza violence continues
Express Times: Easton Area School Board to vote again on previously rejected charter school
Morning Call: Farm manure threatens Lehigh watershed
Morning Call: Politics as Usual
Reading Eagle: Gerlach bill could boost conservation efforts
Reading Eagle: In Berks, schools of thought differ by district on board makeup
Reading Eagle: Mayor lauds council’s likely RAWA move

North by Northwest
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Local districts winners, losers in state budget
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Township supervisors OK bed, breakfast
Williamsport Sun Gazette: County awarded grant to assess properties
Williamsport Sun Gazette: ‘Government by gunpoint’
Erie Times-News: How Erie’s representatives in Congress voted last week

Opinion
Express Times: EDITORIAL: If faster is better on Pennsylvania interstates, so is smoother
Lebanon Daily News: Stability for county budget is a windfall
Lebanon Daily News: Governor’s pension plan offers only false savings
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Don’t rest until flood insurance act is repealed
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Some politicians chip away to freedoms to gain advantages
Harrisburg Patriot News: The Moody’s downgrade is bad news for Pa. Here’s what do about it: Rob McCord
Harrisburg Patriot News: Corbett’s pension plan is filled with ‘false’ savings: Mike Sturla
Harrisburg Patriot News: Want to fix schools? Don’t tax businesses, expand school choice instead: Elizabeth Stelle
Harrisburg Patriot News: While Pa. dallies, other states embrace pension reform: The Sunday Brunch
Centre Daily Times: Column | Historians will recall our leaders’ inaction
York Daily Record: They are here illegally, but they are still children (YDR Opinion)
Pottstown Mercury: Ignoring pension crisis will make matters worse for Pa.
Delco Daily Times: Time for cease-fire in fight over Paterno
Post-Gazette: PUC’s deaf ear: The agency fails to monitor existing taxi operations
Post-Gazette: Time for a police chief: The stage is set and the city needs strong leadership
Times Leader: Pension ‘reform’ provides false savings
Carlisle Sentinel: Our View: We owe it to offer a helping hand
Carlisle Sentinel: Our View: Tidying up the electoral system
Lancaster Intelligencer/Era: Israel at war: Get beyond sound bites
Reading Eagle: Ron Southwick: Pennsylvania suffers Moody’s blues
Reading Eagle: Editorial: State should limit cellphone use while behind wheel

Blogs
CasablancaPA: “AN INEXCUSABLE LACK OF URGENCY”
Commonwealth Foundation: Survey: Pennsylvania Unfriendly to Small Business
Pennsylvania Progressive: Packing Heat in the Brothers’ ‘Hood
Lehigh Valley Ramblings: Dolan Stops Taking Questions at Illick’s Mill News Conference

PoliticsPA’s Celebrity Look-Alikes 2014

The resemblance is striking! Here are PA politicos and their celebrity doppelgangers.

You can also check out our 2013 and 2011 editions.

Cox Kane

Courteney Cox-AG Kathleen Kane

Danson Corbett

Gov. Tom Corbett-Ted Danson

Wolf Tucci

Tom Wolf-Stanley Tucci

Toomey Willis

’80′s Bruce Willis (with hair)-Sen. Pat Toomey

Garfield-Strouse

PA-8 Democratic Nominee Kevin Strouse-Andrew Garfield

Casey Lloyd

Sen. Bob Casey-Sam Lloyd (Ted from Scrubs)

McGinty MacDowell

Andie MacDowell-Fmr. DEP Secretary Katie McGinty

Costello Wilson

Luke Wilson-PA-6 Republican Nominee Ryan Costello

PA-Gov Round-Up: Pension and Education Crises

PA-Governor-Mansion2Last week was about personalities but this week we returned to the issues.

Specifically the issues of education, which polls show voters are most concerned about, and pensions, which the Governor is most worried about and feels is related to the problem of funding schools.

Given the last few weeks, it is not an absurd assumption to guess that education will be the issue most mentioned by Wolf this year while pensions will be brought up as much if not more by the Governor.

Corbett

The Corbett-Cawley campaign has been intensely focused since the budget season on attacking Wolf for not recognizing the pension crisis that the Governor believes is at the heart of the commonwealth’s fiscal problems.

They pointed out that State Rep. Mike Sturla, the Democratic caucus policy chairman, acknowledged that the pension issue needs to be addressed.

“Even as millionaire Secretary Tom Wolf’s surrogates acknowledge Pennsylvania has a pension crisis, Wolf continues turn a blind eye and appease the interests of the public sector unions who have given him $1.13 million since he purchased the Democratic nomination in May,” said Corbett-Cawley Communications Director Chris Pack.  “Governor Corbett is the only one willing to stand up to the public sector unions and get pension reform done and costs under control for future generations.”

The cries from the Governor’s campaign became even louder after Moody’s downgraded the state’s credit rating and cited pensions as one of the contributing factors.

“Moody’s has cited the Commonwealth’s growing pension liabilities as a primary reason for downgrading Pennsylvania’s credit rating despite millionaire Secretary Tom Wolf’s repeated denial of a pension crisis,” Pack stated. “It is a true shame that despite all of the evidence of our state’s pension crisis that Secretary Tom Wolf continues to deny there is a problem at all.  It is time for Secretary Tom Wolf to stop denying our state’s pension crisis for his selfish political reasons and instead encourage his Democratic cohorts to do what is right for the 12.7 million residents of Pennsylvania and not just what is best for the Harrisburg special interests.”

It’s clear the Corbett campaign feels pensions are their strongest issue but it remains to be seen whether they can successfully connect that issue to the one voters (and Wolf) are focusing on, education.

Wolf

After the Corbett campaign took aim at Wolf in a new television ad, the Democratic nominee attacked the Governor for what he identified as a billion dollar cut in education funding.

“Tom Corbett cut $1 billion from education, leading to teacher layoffs and property tax increases, while refusing to make oil and gas companies pay their fair share,” said Beth Melena, the campaign’s spokeswoman. “Tom Corbett sunk Pennsylvania to 49th in the nation in job growth. Now he is spending millions in attacks that have already been called false and ridiculously misleading. After more than three years of failed policies and no leadership, Pennsylvanians are ready for a fresh start.”

Meanwhile, Mike Mikus of FreshStartPA went after Gov. Corbett for speaking in front of an apparently preselected group of Bucks County seniors. He also made clear that the pension and education crises are the fault of the incumbent.

“Tom Corbett is trying to hide from the fact that his $1 billion dollar cut to education is what has driven up property taxes in Pennsylvania and that his pension plan will offer no immediate savings,” Mikus wrote.

“Not only would Tom Corbett’s pension plan do nothing to create short-term savings, it also would do nothing to reduce the unfunded liability. This means that Corbett’s pension plan would not help to upgrade Pennsylvania’s $11.1 billion general obligation bonds to our previous rating of Aa2.”

Expect to hear much more about pensions and education in the weeks and months ahead.

Philadelphia-Based Tea Party Group Changes Name, Shifts Focus

Tea-Party-MovementFive years after the Tea Party movement first gained steam, there are local signs that it may be starting to cool off.

The Independence Hall Tea Party Association, the largest Tea Party group in the tri-state region of PA, NJ, and DE, announced today that it will be removing “Tea Party” from its name and will henceforth be known as just the Independence Hall Foundation. The organization will also be shifting its focus and dissolving its PAC.

“We wish to pursue a larger, more mainstream conservative agenda-while respecting the mission of the broader Tea Party movement,” President Teri Adams said today at a press conference.

Adams claimed that although tensions between the Association and the national Tea Party movement exist, the Association’s decision to change its name and focus derives primarily from the Association’s belief that it has successfully achieved what it set out to do when it formed in 2009.

“While we have usually agreed with most Tea Party objectives, we have not always agreed on Tea Party tactics – especially those espoused by national groups – proving, despite its portrayal as such in the media, that the Tea Party was not monolithic,” she said.

“And just like the original Tea Party of the 18th Century, our organization envisioned the modern Tea Party as a protest movement – not necessarily a permanent social/political movement or party – but one which could lead to peaceful revolutionary changes in government.”

Adams focused throughout the conference on the successes of the Association, which was formed primarily to focus on the Philadelphia media market.

“Over the last five years, our Association, like the broader Tea Party movement in regions across the country, has made a difference,” she said. “We woke up many Americans to an ever-expansive and intrusive federal government.”

“More Americans seem to be aware of our nation’s alarming $16 trillion national debt and the scandals involving renegade bureaucracies, within the federal government, such as the Internal Revenue Service, the National Security Agency, and the Veterans Administration.”

In addition to discussing the broader Tea Party movement’s victories, she also highlighted the Association’s own accomplishments, pointing to its successful lobbying for a Voter ID bill that was eventually signed into law (but was later struck down as unconstitutional by a Commonwealth Court judge) and its annual Congressional Scorecard.

Adams claims that these successes are the reason for the organization’s rebranding, as it is “time to take matters to the next level.”

“While we obviously agree with the core principles of the Tea Party as clearly enunciated during those early 2009 Tax Day Tea Parties – a free enterprise economy based on lower taxes, smaller government, and less regulation – we would like to expand our efforts to include non-traditional tea party issues such as Religious Liberty, Sanctity of Life, Culture and the Arts, Educational Savings Accounts, Foreign Affairs, and Defense,” she said.

Adams closed with a description of what the Association hopes to be and to do as it changes its focus under a new name. “In the future, we wish to be referred to as The Independence Hall Foundation – a conservative educational organization dedicated to promoting the principles enshrined in our founding documents – the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.”

7/25 Ups & Downs

A credit downgrade, a listicle and a gun. Who says summer is boring and predicable? See who made this week’s list.

Up Arrow1PA Employment. The state added 1,800 jobs last month and the unemployment rate stayed flat at 5.6%. In fact, PA’s unemployment rate has dropped 2.5% over the last nineteen months. We’d give this arrow to Governor Corbett but as polling has shown, leaders get the blame when the economy is bad but don’t get the credit when the economy is good (there’s a guy down in Washington who can sympathize).

Down ArrowCredit Rating. This week’s the credit rating agency Moody’s downgraded Pennsylvania’s rating from Aa2 to Aa3. There was (of course) much partisan finger-pointing but the firm blamed budgetary tricks and the state’s burgeoning pension obligations. Regardless of blame, this was bad news for everyone.

Up Arrow1Pat Toomey. How can we not give an up arrow to the man who has successfully become a Buzzfeed contributor? Besides reminding everyone of the commonwealth’s abundant supply of home-grown entertainers (from Grace Kelly to Will Smith to Taylor Swift) it’s an unconventional way to reach voters. The Senator also made headlines this week for his call for harsher against Vladimir Putin. As a member of the legislative branch, Toomey has the advantage of denouncing a man everyone hates without any negative consequences.

Down ArrowCharlie Dent. Nearly every member of Congress takes advantage of the traveling perks and PA’s Representatives are no exception. Unfortunately for Rep. Charlie Dent, though, he led the pack among the state delegation. Congressman Dent and his staff took fifteen such trips over the past two years and serves on the House Ethics Committee that approves all these expenditures.

Down ArrowTom Marino. Rep. Marino found himself at the center of an unwelcome situation last Friday when his press secretary was arrested for attempting to bring a gun into the Cannon House Office Building. Ryan Shucard was charged with carrying a pistol without a license and was placed on leave. Shucard has pled not guilty, however, so this story probably isn’t going away anytime soon.

The tweet of the week goes to Philadelphia Daily News reporter William Bender for admitting what we all secretly do, even if we’re too ashamed to admit it, click on Internet ads.

7/25 Morning Buzz

PA-state-flag6Corbett attacks Wolf on taxes, Rothenberg looks at the state’s congressional races and Sen. Toomey writes for Buzzfeed. Good morning politicos, here’s the Buzz!

PA-Gov: New Corbett Ad Blasts Wolf on Taxes (VIDEO): The 30-second spot charges Tom Wolf with wanting to raise taxes and with moving his company to avoid Pennsylvania taxes.

Rothenberg Political Report: Costello, Fitzpatrick, Boyle Favored: The Rothenberg Political Report sees three favorites in the races for PA-6, PA-8, and PA-13.

PA-Sen: Senator Toomey’s Little-known Hobby: Think only Millennials frequent Buzzfeed? Think again.

Statewide
PA Independent: Uber, Lyft granted temporary authority to operate in Allegheny County
PA Independent: Arcade helps give PA borough extra life, but hefty tax could mean game over
StateImpactPA: Drilling plans for Loyalsock State Forest quietly move forward

Philadelphia
Philly Now: It’s official: Cameras coming to Philly cabs
Heard in the Hall: Bon Voyage: Nutter and Delegation in Paris
Philadelphia Daily News: Jury finds ex-Traffic Court judges not guilty of corruption, fraud
Philadelphia Daily News: At LOVE Park, advocates for Israel, Palestine face off
The Inquirer: Fight over ride sharing comes to Philadelphia
The Inquirer: PennDOT chief: Congress must do its work or put projects at risk
The Inquirer: Phila. pension fund ends year up 15.6%
WHYY NewsWorks: Immigration agencies seek Philly attorneys to help represent kids from Central America
Philadelphia City Paper: ACLY: Philly cops bust civilians for photography

SEPA
Bucks County Courier Times: Northampton board creates Veteran Advisory Commission
Bucks Local News: Northampton Township considers implementation of LERTA program to stimulate economic growth
Bucks Local News: Bucks County Congressman leads bipartisan push condemning Russia, MH17 terror attack
Bucks Local News: Fitzpatrick, Meehan release photos of concealed, ignored mail at Philadelphia VA; fears reports of destroyed, concealed correspondence could extend throughout VA

Pittsburgh
WTAE: Action News Investigates: City using hidden cameras to catch illegal dumpers
Early Returns: Education cuts? It depends
Post-Gazette: Allegheny County public works director resigns
Post-Gazette: DA demands city police follow specific eyewitness ID techniques
Post-Gazette: Corbett care plan no longer cuts aid for disabled
Pittsburgh Business Times: Major facelift completed for Brookline Boulevard

Southwest
Beaver County Times: Councilman’s wife charged with dealing drugs
Beaver County Times: Insurance companies to refund Pennsylvanians nearly $5.2 million
Beaver County Times: Beaver County Commissioners hold off on media policy
Beaver County Times: County commissioners split over property purchase
Altoona Mirror: Local man becomes US citizen
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Corbett’s education policies faulted

NEPA
Pocono Record: Attorney general files legal action against Monroe County paving business
Pocono Record: Delaware Valley School Board to OK insurance coverage for same-sex couples
Citizens Voice: CAN DO asks county council not to sell Hazelton building
Citizens Voice: Flood board wants vacant seats filled
Citizens Voice: Report: Culture, history has $80m impact on region
Times-Tribune: Wayne Evans expected to fill vacant city council seat
Times-Tribune: Courtright has backup plan if commuter tax plan falters
Times-Tribune: Online petition against Scranton commuter tax gets 1K signatures
Times-Tribune: Pension board says retired firefighters won’t get increase
Standard Speaker: PV study reveals high levels of radon in cluster
Standard Speaker: Mayor’s refusal to recognize council’s appointments questioned
News Item: Fuel oil discovery slows creek project in Mount Carmel

South Central
Harrisburg Patriot News: Corbett signs new execution warrant for Trista Eng killer Hubert Michael
Harrisburg Patriot News: Reforming Pa. public school funding ‘herculean’ task for new commission, members say
Harrisburg Patriot News: Is Corbett mixing official business and campaigning? Yes, analysts say, all politicians do
York Daily Record: State representatives push pension reform in York County
York Dispatch: State: Think Loud CEO’s criminal past won’t affect $5M grant
York Dispatch: York residents talk about pension reform

Lehigh Valley
Morning Call: Corbett has spent $1.7 million on TV ads in July
Morning Call: Pennsylvania’s disabled worker program will continue
Morning Call: Senate panel reviews Leeson, other judicial nominees
Reading Eagle: Building trade groups urge Reading City Council to reject project labor agreements
WFMZ: ASD Forced to dip further into fund balance for 2015 budget
Express Times: Protest over immigrant children at KidsPeace got loud, remained peaceful, police say

North by Northwest
Centre Daily Times: Rally targets LGBT inequality in workplaces, housing
Onward State: Jay Paterno, Bill Kenney File Federal Lawsuit against Penn State
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Hearing about drilling on state lands coming to city

Opinion
Times-Tribune: Release data on smog plan
Times-Tribune: State late to game on natural gas
Citizens Voice: Education can clear up confusion
The Times Leader: Our Opinion: Is Pennsylvania’s ‘energy revolution’ shaping up as you expected?
Philly.com: Armed for a political gun fight
The Inquirer: Editorial: Justice for judges?
Bucks County Courier Times: Numbing numbers
Post-Gazette: Here’s hoping: The PUC takes a step forward on ride sharing
News Item: Press on with blight fight; hold landlords to the fire
Harrisburg Patriot News: A third Tom enters the race for governor and turns up the heat: John L. Micek
York Daily Record: A question to state Sen. Scott Wagner

Blogs
Commonwealth Foundation: Audio: The Beginning of the End for Obamacare?
Keystone Politics: Audit of DEP Finds Shocking Evidence of Republican Environmental Policy
Keystone Politics: PA Legislators Accept Free Vacations with Ethics Committee Approval
2 Political Junkies: Now THAT’S A Switch!

Rothenberg Political Report: Costello, Fitzpatrick, Boyle Favored

Brendan-Boyle-2013Although we are still over three months away from election day, the Rothenberg Political Report has identified frontrunners for three key Congressional races in Pennsylvania.

6th District

Republican Ryan Costello is the “clear favorite” against Dr. Manan Trivedi in the 6th district. Both are fighting for the seat vacated by Republican Jim Gerlach. According to the report, this district leans toward the GOP.

Costello also earned a candidate profile in the report.

“Clearly a political junkie, Costello comes across as personable and astute,” writes Rothenberg. “He can discuss campaigns and policy with equal ease, and could become someone of influence within the House GOP. If elected, Costello will likely be a mainstream, pragmatic conservative Republican — definitely not a tea party caucus guy.”

8th District

In the 8th district, incumbent Republican Mike Fitzpatrick is currently looking “very strong” in his race against Democrat Kevin Strouse thanks to a competitive primary challenge from Shaughnessy Naughton. They rate the seat as “Republican favored” as opposed to PA-6’s “Lean Republican” status.

13th District

Democratic Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz left her position in Congress to run for governor, but the Rothenberg Political Report believes that the seat will remain in the hands of the Democrats. They are confident that State Representative Brendan Boyle will overtake Republican Dee Adcock in the 13th district, asserting that Boyle “will win the seat in November.”

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